Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti - Members of Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) joined the Djiboutian Armed Forces (FAD) and French Forces in Djibouti (FFDJ) to conduct a Cyber Defense Engagement at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Dec. 11 - 15, 2022.
The engagement consisted of a five-day course designed to provide participants introductory knowledge encompassing network creation using Windows servers, email system creation, file exchange and web server maintenance.
“After this course you should be able to run a small network for a business, company or even military member that requires these services,” said U.S Navy Lt. Cmdr. Alexander W. Miranda, officer in charge of Horn of Africa, Dissemination, Exploitation and Signals - Cell (HADES - C). “We're providing classroom instruction beyond just information and technology that they can read. We provide them with the know-how, the step-by-step instructions and then we challenge them to see if they truly understand it.”
The knowledge and skills practiced over the course were put to the test for the capstone project focused on file exchange and web page creation. The information shared is standard across the globe, making it easy for partners to collaborate on cyber security.
“These skills are very useful because we all work together in the same country of Djibouti,” said FAD Lt. Omar Dirieh Samod, head of the Djiboutian operational information team. “We are from different countries and we are all very different, but eventually we will have to work together, and to all work in the same way with cyber defense will be very useful.”
U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Jami Shawley, CJTF-HOA commanding general, commented on the importance of exchanging cyber defense knowledge between partners.
“I thank you for pressing toward becoming subject matter experts in this field - it is not easy and requires time and attention,” Shawley said. “Cyber warfare is future warfare and is being used around the globe to accomplish things that traditional forces cannot do. It is a dangerous battlefield with potentially catastrophic results. We have seen it time and time again.”
Participants received certificates and awards after successfully completing the capstone project. The last Cyber Defense Engagement was held in 2021, but Miranda said he hopes the exchange will occur more frequently in the future and wants to develop an ongoing cyber defense program with partner nations.
“I would say that if we were to build this into more than just a course, people would see the ramifications and success really quickly,” Miranda said.